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The Epic of Gilamesh is the oldest recorded story in the world, originally carved in cuneiform script on twelve stone tablets. The talk explores Gilgamesh’s journey, from its beginning in, and return to Uruk, and how he evolved psychologically from all he discovered and was obliged to accept, including his own mortality. The talk also examines Gilgamesh’s companion, Enkidu, and shows how the latter’s journey can be viewed as representing Mankind’s evolution from a wild man of the open fields to a city dweller and servant of the gods.
Speaker: Andrew George
Andrew George is Professor of Babylonian at SOAS, University of London. His prize-winning translation of Gilgamesh was published by Penguin in 2000 and he is currently translating new texts from cuneiform tablets. Gilgamesh was the subject of Radio 4's In Our Time where Andrew George was a guest of Melvyn Bragg (3 November 2016).[Updated 2018]